Archives / 2007 / November
  • The future of Domain Specific Languages on the Visual Studio platform

    Now Visual Studio 2008 is released (I know, I'm blogger #100.000 to mention this) it is interesting to look at the future of one of the important building blocks on the Microsoft platform for building Software Factories: the DSL Tools.

    Stuart Kent, Senior Program Manager with the Visual Studio Ecosystem team, reveals a part of the post Visual Studio 2008 roadmap for the DSL tools in its blog post DSL Tools beyond VS2008.

    Some of the mentioned concepts are already available in the implementation of the Web Service Software Factory: Modeling Edition, really interesting to have a look at the code.

    The next version of Visual Studio will be Rosario. Clemens Rijnders describes some of the new Rosario features with respect to DSLs in his blog post Rosario Team Architect CTP10 Preview. One promising concept is the Designer Bus, which should simplify working with multiple DSLs in the same domain that reference each other. Some support for this functionality in currently available as the DSL integration service power toy.

  • PowerShell Exception handling using "Trap" explained - links

    PowerShell has powerful exception handling, but it is badly documented and takes while to understand what the heck they actually want to do to wire up the exception handling.

    I'm normally not such a link poster, this is more of a "post-to-self" item that might be useful for others as well.

  • The P&P Web Service Software Factory modeling edition and the Secret Dutch Software Factory Society

    It is final! After almost nine months of hard work the version 3 of the Patterns&Practices Service Factory is released on CodePlex.

    Johan Danforth already published this announcement here, but it doesn't hurt to bring it to your attention again because this stuff is good!

    And the strange thing is that Don Smith, the Technical Product Planner of the Service Factory didn't had the time to blog about it and announce it officially. But I know why: he is a busy man! After TechEd 2007 in Barcelona last week (interview video), he was so kind to take the time to repeat the 3-days Service Factory Customization Workshop in the Netherlands with the Secret Dutch Software Factory Society.

    I heard about this workshop through Olaf Conijn, who used to work at our great company Macaw. He announced the Dutch workshop in this blog post.

    Olaf and Don did give this fantastic workshop at the domains of InfoSupport in Veenendaal, the Netherlands (thanks for the hospitality Marcel!). Way to far away from home (okay 80km in the Netherlands is trouble in the morning and afternoon), so a good reason to take a hotel and continue in the evenings where you often have the best conversations about beer, woman, and... oh ya, software factories.

    Don and Olaf are great guys who know their stuff, and they even both did Bikram yoga, my addiction in life;-)

    I personally wasn't really that interested in the web services part of the Web Service software factory, but in the customization part. And that is what we did. We customized the factory without "cracking the factory" (change the source code) through the great extensibility points that are available, and customized it while "cracking the factory" and changing the code. And the good thing is: this scenario is supported, documented and it is actually expected behavior to be done by companies who will be using the Service Factory;-). And the brilliant thing is: they even provided the code to build a complete MSI installer for your modified Service Factory!

    The factory is provided with complete (recompileable) source code, and contains a lot of really interesting factory plumbing that I will elaborate on in a later post.

    One thing is sure: we are definitely going to integrate the Web Service Software Factory into the Macaw Solutions Factory, our own software factory. It will fit like a glove (after some customization of course;-)). Brilliant work P&P!

    Another great thing of three days together with 25 people busy with software factories is the amount of collective knowledge and the wealth of information we did share with each other. My compliments to Don and Olaf for providing a lot of room for this information sharing.

    We gave presentations to each other about the things we are doing with software factories:

    For more information see the MSDN landing page Web Service Software Factory: Modeling Edition. Check it out!